How companies have adapted offices for the face-to-face return



After more than a year of working from home, the gradual increase of vaccination is driving several companies to invite employees back to their offices. In some, the environment will be very different from the one left in March of last year. Reforms have been adapting workplaces to the needs created by the pandemic, such as remote cubicles to respect social distance and spaces for decompression of employees. Even new offices are being built with a different look to avoid covid-19 outbreaks when the return starts.


At Tétris, the architecture firm of the multinational corporate space company JLL, 100% of the projects carried out last year were renovation projects. Before the pandemic, this slice was half (the other came from new offices). This year, 60% of the projects will be renovation projects.


In some companies, the pandemic has allowed projects to come to fruition, such as size changes. In March, the Rio Grande do Sul bank Agibank opened an office in Campinas, in the interior of São Paulo, to accommodate employees interested in hybrid work (working from home is still allowed). Costing R$20 million reais, the 19,000 square meter area has open spaces with natural light and ventilation and an outdoor terrace.


For some time, the Brazilian arm of Kuehne+Nagel, a Swiss logistics multinational, wanted to eliminate individual rooms from the company's office in São Paulo. The pandemic motivated the general tearing down of the walls and motivated the creation of a rotating system for marking worktables. Every employee must reserve a cubicle through the company's digital channels before each journey.